Question of liability insurance still unresolved
The Lions Park tennis court is being considered as the location of an outdoor skating rink. Darrell Cole - Amherst Daily News
AMHERST – A plan to develop an outdoor skating rink in Amherst has taken another step forward.
The town has done a review of potential locations and is recommending the tennis court on Cornwall Avenue as the best site for an outdoor rink.
“Building the rink on the tennis court surface at Lions Park would be the best solution,” Deputy Mayor Dale Fawthrop said. “This surface can be easily configured to host an ice surface, there are lights in place that are on a timer that can be used for nighttime use, and both water for the initial flooding and ongoing maintenance can be accessed very easily by the volunteers.”
Fawthrop said town staff can provide volunteers with the hose needed to flood the surface as well as a key to the heated water room so they can access the building as required to maintain the rink.
The deputy mayor said the town’s director of Community and Economic Development Roger MacIsaac looked at three locations including Dickey Park, the Rotary Centennial Park and the Lions Park and found the Lions Park has the space, access to a fire hydrant and access to an interior water source.
Sarah MacIntosh of Maggie’s Place said she was contacted by the town early Tuesday and is optimistic the project will happen early in the new year.
“This is a big step in the right direction,” she said. “We have a few things we have to overcome, including liability insurance and volunteers, but there’s a lot of talk and a lot of support in the community for it.”
The Amherst Lions Club proposed an outdoor rink at the same location last winter, but dropped the idea when a public meeting only had one person show up willing to volunteer.